Kanker District,Chhattisgarh

Kanker District is located in the southern region of the state of Chhattisgarh, India within the longitudes 20.6-20.24 and latitudes 80.48-81.48. The total area of the district is 5285.01 square kilometers. The population is 651,333.

The Kanker town (the district’s headquarters) is situated on the National Highway NH-43. It lies between the two well developed cities of Chhattisgarh namely Raipur (Capital of Chhattisgarh) and Jagdalpur (the district headquarters of the neighboring Bastar district).


The history of Kanker is started from Stone Era. With reference of Ramayana and Mahabharat there was a dense forest area named Dandakaranya and the Kanker state belonged to Dandakaranya. According to myths the Kanker was the land of monks. A lot of Rishis (monks) named Kank, Lomesh, Shringi, Angira were lived here. In sixth century before Christ the region was affected by Buddhism. The ancient history of Kanker tells that it remained always independent state.

In 106 AD the Kanker state was under the Satvahan dynasty and the king was Satkarni, This fact is also described by Chinese visitor Whensaung. After Satvahans the state was under control of Nags, Vakataks, Gupt, Nal and Chalukya dynasties time to time. Som dynasty was founded by the king Singh Raj and this dynasty ruled the state from 1125 to 1344. After the downfall of Soms a brave and strong person Dharam Dev kept the foundation of Kandra dynasty. Kandra dynasty ruled the state up to 1385. After the downfall of Kandras the Chandra dynasty came. According to a myth the first king of this dynasty was Veer Kanhar Dev. He ruled the state up to 1404. This dynasty ruled the state up to 1802.

Kanker Princely State

The Kanker state came under the control of the Bhosales of Nagpur during the reign of Bhoop Dev from 1809 to 1818. During the kingdom of Narhari Deb the Kanker state came under control of British from Maratha. As British government gave the adoption to Narhari Dev and He gave the acknowledgement of fealty to British. In 1882 the control of Kanker State handed over to Commissioner Raipur.

During the rule of Narhar Deo, a palace near Gadiya Mountain, printing press, library, Radhakrishna Temple, Ramjanki Temple, Jagannath Temple and Balaji Temple were constructed. He made a plan named Ratna Bhandar for keeping grain in stock for his people. He established a new town named Narharpur near Kanker.

In 1904 Komal Dev became the king of Kanker. During his kingdom one English high school, one Girls school and 15 primary Schools were established and also two hospitals one in Kanker and the other in Sambalpur were constructed. He established a new town near Kanker named Govindpur. He also tried to make capital at Govindpur instead of Kanker. He died on 8 January 1925. After his death, Bhanupratap Dev became the king. Bhanupratap Dev was the last king of Kanker before independence of India. After independence he was elected as a member of the legislative assembly from Kanker constituency two times.

Places to See
Kanker District has the following attractions:
Kanker Palace
This place is very renowned for its royal palace including the tribal villages and the deep forests. The possession of the palace is with the esteemed royal family that belonged to the 12th century. The family of Late Maharajadhiraj Udai Pratap Deo resided here, since 2002. Now some section of the palace is being converted into a hotel.
The Gadiya Mountain

The Gadiya Mountain came into light at the time of Kandra dynasty. When the Kandra king Dharma Dev won the Kanker. He declared his capital on Gadhiya Mountain, which is a natural form of a fort. On the mountain there is a tank which never dries and fulfill by water throughout the year. One part of this tank is called as Sonai and the other part of this tank is called as Rupai. Actually Sonai and Rupai were the two daughters of Kandra king Dharma Dev. On the southern part of this tank there is a cave named Churi pagar. The entry of this cave is very much narrow. On any outer attack the King and his family lived safe in this cave.

The space of the cave is sufficient to accommodate 500 people inside. The exit door of this cave is towards west direction. In the south east part of Gadiya mountain there is another cave called Jogi cave. The length of this cave is 50 meters. In ancient time lot of monks lives here alone for their meditation. There is a small pond in this cave. The water of this cave flows on the rock like a water fall. On the bottom of Gadiya mountain the Doodh river flows.

Legend Years ago it is said that in the Gadhiya Mountain lived a King. He had two daughters named “Sonai” and “Rupai”. Both were playing near the lake over the hilly area. Suddenly they both fell in the lake that lake was later named as “Sonai Rupai Talab”. It is said that the water of that lake never dries and there are two fish on very depth of that Lake. One fish is of gold and another one is of silver. Both fishes are alive till now also. So many people of Kanker claim that they have seen both the fish. On the mountain there are two rocks behind the main “Sheetla Temple” and the door between those mountain are very thin that only thin persons can enter there but after entering the middle there is a Big Hall in which about 300 people can be seated. People say that the King used to stay with his soldiers during any war on that particular place.

On the occasion of Navratri, a cultural fest known as Gadhiya Mahotsav is celebrated beneath the Gadhiya Mountain.

Malanjhkudum Water fall
About 15 kilometers away towards south form Kanker, there is a small mountain. On this mountain there is a spot named Neele Gondi from where the Doodh river takes its shape. After crossing the 10 kilometers there is a place named as Malanjhkudum from where the river produces three waterfalls. The heights of these waterfalls are 10 meters. 15 meters and 9 meters respectively. The slope of this water fall is like a ladder. The wave of this water fall is very attractive and challenging. This is an ideal place for picnic. The road is available to reach this spot.
Charre-Marre Water fall
This is another beautiful water fall situated in Kanker district. This water fall is situated 17 kilometers away from Antagarh block of Kanker district. There is a place named Charre-Marre on the way from Antagarh to Aamabera. The water fall produces by the river named Jogidahara which flows in Matla valley. The height of this water fall is 16 meters. The slop of this water fall is jig jag.
Shivani Temple
This temple is situated in Kanker city. This temple is called Shivani Maa temple. The statue of goddess is excellent. According to a myth this Goddess is a combination of two Goddess name Kali Maa and Durga Maa. The vertically half part is of goddess Kali and the remaining half part is of goddess Durga. This type of statue is only two in numbers in whole world. One is in Kolkata and another is in Kanker.
Some Famous Temples

  • Santoshi Temple – Near New Bus Stand
  • Maa Shitla Devi Temple – Shitlapara
  • Jagannath Temple – Rajapara
  • Shiv Temple – Up Down Road
  • Hanuman Temple – Up Down Road
  • Krishna Temple – Near Daily Market
  • Balaji Temple – Rajapara
  • Tripur Sundari Temple – Nathiya Nava Gaon
  • Shanidev Temple- Near Daily market
  • kankaleen Temple- Near M.G. Ward
  • Sai Temple- Near Shitlapara
  • Other places of attraction

  • Tank on mountain
  • Keshkal Ghat
  • Ishan van
  • Bhandari Para Dam
  • Up Down Road
  • Kherkatta Reservoir
  • Mankesri Dam
  • Dudhawa dam